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10 Common Growth Challenges in the Trucking and Billing Industry

Navigating the growth challenges that trucking and billing industry professionals are faced with on a daily basis can be stressful without having an accurate understanding of what those obstacles are. 

The most common errors within the industry are easily avoidable with enough attention to detail and planning. Some of the most common challenges regarding growth in the trucking and billing industry may seem obvious, but many of them will probably come as a surprise. 

The most common growth challenges for professionals within the trucking and billing industry include the following:

  • Bill of lading errors 
  • Changing trucking regulations 
  • Delayed payments and cash flow challenges 
  • Continuity planning 
  • Variable demands 
  • Overhead costs rising 
  • Repair and maintenance costs on the rise 
  • Higher insurance premiums 
  • Unreliable drivers 
  • Higher trucking taxes

Bill of Lading Errors 

A bill of lading is a carrier-issued, legally binding document that clearly states important details about a shipment including the types of goods that are being transported, the quantity, the final destination, and the date upon which the package was received. 

A bill of lading serves as both a receipt for items that have been shipped and as a contract between the sender and the carrier. That means the consequences for making mistakes on one can be dire. 

Outside of not including one with shipments at all, there are numerous common bill of lading mistakes to watch out for. They include providing descriptions that are inaccurate or lacking in detail, improperly or thoroughly listing hazardous materials being shipped, and providing billing information that isn’t accurate. 

A few ways to avoid making common bill of lading mistakes include using a trucking management system or incorporating a bill of lading checklist to make sure all the information needed is provided before signing off on it and including it with the shipment.

Changing Trucking Regulations

Another major growth challenge in the trucking industry is keeping up with trucking regulations. Although trucking regulations can be difficult to stay on top of, doing so only helps in the long run since they’re established to reduce the risks that come with the job. Some of those trucking regulations that should be closely followed include fuel emission requirements, insurance standards, and service hour limits.

Delayed Payments and Cash Flow Challenges 

Another obstacle that can impede growth is problems maintaining steady cash flow. Since many truckers and fleets get paid in 60- to 90-day increments, it’s not uncommon for them to be strapped for cash from time to time, especially when just starting out. 

Unfortunately, those circumstances can prevent truckers from increasing the number of loads they ship since without timely payments they don’t have access to the funds needed for fuel, lodging, and other expenses that go into hauling a shipment. 

A couple of methods truckers use to circumvent cash flow challenges include opening lines of credit, securing short-term loans, and charging customers using freight factoring. Freight factoring converts invoices into funds in a day or less in most cases, which provides more flexibility regarding cash flow.

Continuity Planning

Another growth challenges facing the trucking and truck billing industry is a lack of continuity planning. A business continuity plan refers to the steps a business has identified that will help the business survive even through unforeseen circumstances that are out of the business owner’s control. 

A couple of scenarios where continuity planning comes into play include ransomware cyber-attacks and natural disasters. For example, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic did just that. 

One of the most important aspects of continuity planning is making accurate financial projections that demonstrate how long the business can withstand an extended period of uncertainty, so it’s vital to ensure that metrics like cost per mile are tracked accurately.

Variable Demands

An unexpected growth challenge for trucking industry professionals is the fact that demands are changing so constantly. Complicating matters even further is the fact that the pandemic has led to ongoing supply chain problems that exacerbate issues regarding expectations truckers are expected to meet. 

While some industries can’t find enough truckers to meet their hauling demands, there are others that have had to lay drivers off due to a lack of work. Some of the best resources for overcoming shifting demands for truckers include online freight booking and electronic logging devices that can help provide insight into where the most demand is long term.

Overhead Costs Rising 

A major growth challenge in any industry is rising overhead costs. The costs of necessities like gas and driver salaries are increasingly difficult to budget for. Luckily truckers have access to resources that allow them to compare and contrast gas costs, making finding the most affordable option easier than ever.

Repair and Maintenance Costs On the Rise

Another major growth challenge for trucking industry professionals is the rising costs of routine maintenance. The main factors include ongoing supply chain logjams and a continuing labor shortage. 

The best way to overcome those costs is to maintain a regular maintenance schedule and to invest in the best products in the first place, that way breakdowns won’t be expected to begin with.

Higher Insurance Premiums 

Higher insurance premiums are a major growth obstacle, especially for those who are just starting out in the industry. Truckers are required to have commercial vehicle coverage. 

That covers them for collisions, liability, and physical damage in most cases. Truckers may also be required to maintain uninsured motorist island hazardous material insurance as well. Fortunately, truckers don’t have to search far for a one-stop solution for all their insurance needs. 

The Trucker’s Affiliate Program (TAP) partnered with Cornerstone can help truckers construct the ideal insurance program that covers all their needs.

Unreliable Drivers 

One relatively new growth challenge truckers are faced with is an increasing amount of unreliable drivers. The fact that the historic ongoing truck driver shortage shows no signs of ending only makes it harder to find reliable drivers since salaries are going up in hopes to fill open trucking positions. 

One of the most crucial resources available for finding reliable truck drivers is new screening technology like TruckerSearch or HireRight DAC.

Higher Trucking Taxes 

High taxes can serve as a growth obstacle in just about any industry. The taxes that truckers are responsible for range from social security to quarterly IFTA taxes. Not paying them on time can present even more expenses in the form of late fees. 

Some of the best ways to help avoid paying late fees, or a higher than normal annual tax bill include using trucking software that has special accounting capabilities, or by partnering with an accountant or finance professional with expertise in trucking.

A Program Built for Overcoming Growth Challenges in Trucking

There are a handful of growth challenges that can impede the success of trucking professionals, don’t let insurance be one of them! That’s where the Trucker’s Affiliate Program (TAP) comes in handy. Partnered with Cornerstone Insurance Services, TAP is the one-stop-shop for all your commercial trucking insurance needs. Get a custom quote today! 


Are Truck Drivers Required To Have a Bill of Lading?

Yes truck drivers are required to have a Bill of Lading with their shipment.

What Is a Freight Invoice?

A summary of a transaction produced by the carrier.

Who Generates Bill of Lading?

The Bill of Lading is generated by the carrier.

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One-Stop-Shop With TAP

TAP & Cornerstone Insurance, is a one-stop-shop with access to multiple insurance markets to provide the best pricing and service available in the trucking industry. To receive a free quote, click the button below!